“Impressive… those aren’t members of the adventurer’s guild are they?”
“No, I don’t believe so. If they join the adventurer’s guild they may very well be on their way to at least gold level. There’s quite the money in it. However, they seem to be people that value money over honest work.”
“Well, no matter. Let us just check this fight out.”
These voices could not be heard, nor seen by anyone outside of their radius. As the fight raged on in front of them, everyone completely ignored their existence. They had actually been watching the group for quite a while now, slowly keeping pace with them as they traveled.
However, this was the first time they had a chance to observe the group in combat. Soka found it odd that Knights from the kingdom of Ururuk were here. It was quite the long way to travel just to ambush a caravan.
Though what they said had not sat well with them. Seeing as though they seemed to call the girl merchandise. Regardless of the matter, they weren’t here to observe or interfere in the mission. They were here to get clarification on that young girl. Was she truly the one who caused the disruption in the city of Carthage?
Or was she just an unaccounted for factor. They would decide based on her demeanor. For now it was simply best to just stick around and watch. After-all, they were entirely off the radar. If that girl is to become an enemy of them, it would be better to be fully informed of her capabilities well before.
She seemed to be intently watching the mercenaries fight, with a look on her face that spelled novice.
“I don’t believe she is truly of any concern as we had initially thought. It may be that she was within the city and just barely fled before the mass of deaths had occurred… In any sense, it may be better for us to simply question her about the events that happened. We may not need to engage her in combat at all.”
“Oh?!--” They were taken aback for a moment with the technique that the man had just done. Appearing silently and from nowhere, was a man partially composed of earth and grass. “It seems things are getting pretty interesting now.”
Just as quickly as he had left, the man had disappeared. “Hey, Elim, does that man not seem… familiar?”
“Ah, yes. I believe he fits the description. The Green Assassin, Wolfwood.”
“What might be his connection to something like this? I wonder.”
“Now now, brother, let’s not get too involved. We’re here for only one mission alone. Let’s stick to the task at hand.”
“Of course, of course.”
The two figures continued to converse throughout the duration of the entire bout. There was no way they could be detected or heard, or smelled, or seen, or felt, or dare I say tasted either. The ability his brother held was a special trait. He was the only one in the world who could use this exact ability. Special Trait [Spectra]. This ability allowed him to venture between the world of the physical, and the ethereal at will.
Upon learning to utilize it to its complete potency, he could even now extend this ability over to his twin brother, Soka. This ability had allowed him to win many duals and battles. He was quite literally untouchable. Of course, there were different drawbacks to the technique, but as of yet, not an opponent to date has been capable of countering it.
Just as they were having a discourse, they were both completely silent. This silence was due to the fact that they had just witnessed something exemplary from the porcelain ranked adventurer. The skill she had exhibited just now was far beyond what her appearance suggested.
She had just taken out three people with a simple move. They knew right away that it was not a combat skill, but rather just brute strength. There we have it… she had to have known about what occurred in that city. There was also no way that her appearance in the city with that kind of skill was not a factor in combat against the demon that appeared. It would be purely insane to think that a diamond level porcelain adventurer had appeared that day, and left just 5 minutes before the mass death caused by the demonoid.
“Let’s just watch a little longer. If anything she’s not strong enough to have caused that city's death, but she does seem like a formidable warrior.”
The twins had no idea that she was simply holding back. Earlier when Lusha had convicted herself to only utilizing physical combat, she made this choice so as to not draw too much attention to herself. She’d seen how her kind of magic plays out.
“Oh? What a twist of events here, huh?” The twins watched carefully at what was about to occur next.
Giren glared back at the adventurer before her. It was quite the cowardly move to attack him while he was completely restrained and incapable of moving. But in truth, would he stand a chance if she had allowed him to escape his restraints? Probably not. It seems those bluffs she spoke of earlier regarding beating Nuon were not baseless claims.
“H-hey! What are you doing Lusha?! You’re part of a contract right now.” Horas shouted.
She turned towards the man and glared. “Shut it.” Just the glare alone sent shivers down his spine. “So tell me. What is it you’re doing with that child?”
He grimaced as the weight of her feet slowly started to increase. If he were not to answer soon, he’d have to pay dearly. He let out a gasp. “She's a gifted healer. Her services are being used in another country to cure people of their ailments.”
Her eyes narrowed. “They pay quite handsomely for her gift ability. But recently, other countries have been trying to get their hands on her. I promise that is all it is.”
The witch removed her leg from the man’s chest and kicked the stone slab off of him. “Let’s hope it is as you say.” She walked away, sheathing her blade. The girl was still lying down having been injured by the fall earlier. She knelt beside her and pulled her hood down from her face.
“You’re crying still…” This would have to be the first time she had seen the child stare eye to eye with her. Her eyes were an odd golden color. Many small dots lined them up. It was as if looking at the night sky in a shade of gold. But instantly, a pained expression resurfaced on her face and she yet again averted her gaze.
“Is it because you don’t want to do this?” She shook her head no. “Are these people out to hurt you?” She also shook her head. “What is your name?” There was a pause before she opened her mouth to speak, but no noise would come out. She strained to say her own name until finally she let out the quietest sound. “Rinn…”
Lusha was shocked, she was certain the girl was mute. Something still didn’t smell quite right here. She sighed and stood back up, observing the space around her. “Anyways, get up. We’re going to continue to the destination.
“From now on, we’re covering our tracks. Had you guys told me of this beforehand, I’d have done this from the beginning.” She casted a technique which was at base, a low level camouflage technique. Of course, she wanted to avoid the attention of small fry, but attract those who may have potential.
Before they set off, she tore the top of the hooded carriage off and placed the young Vein onto it. His skull had been fractured and he had long since lost consciousness, but he was not yet dead which was a good thing. While Lusha knew a magnitude of magic abilities, there was one she lacked amongst all others. This was healing magic. What use did it have to her? She, who could regenerate at any time. She, who could not die. She, who wished for death.
She casted her healing technique on the man, repairing the damage to his skull. Unfortunately however, damage to the brain is the hardest thing to repair or fix for even the greatest of healers. Vein would just have to thank that his life was saved, and suffer whatever consequences came about the damage.
The group’s demeanor relaxed a little knowing that they were in the hands of such skilled company. They no longer had to worry about fighting off assassins, and syndicate groups alike. Nor did they have to worry about elite hired mercenaries. Even though they were pretty strong mercenaries, there were much stronger ones out there.
The main difference between Mercenaries and Adventurers, is the type of limitations they have on each other. While adventurers were only limited to ethical and moral missions such as monster slaying or escort missions, Mercenaries were able to do whatever it is they wanted. So long as the money was right, they would do it. Of course, the payout and privileges that adventurer’s get are substantially greater once they reach ranks of gold and above.
After traveling a couple of miles in silence, they ended up at the end of the cobblestoned paths. From here on out was just a forest too plentiful to build through. They were perhaps 112 miles from the city and nightfall was arriving soon. “We’ll camp here.”
They dismounted their horse and unstocked supplies a couple miles into the forest. As the sun’s radiance fled with it, the sound of liveliness encompassed the night. Crickets serenaded everyone who cared to hear, joined in with the occasional owl’s solo.
They opened the supplies they had in the back of the caravan only to find a couple few measly bites of food. A lot of the meat had already turned sour due to the fact that they waited so long to eat it.
“Hey… what kind of rations is that?? Were you fools just planning on taking a lap around the city and returning? Not even the girl could survive on these.”
“Tch. If we didn’t spend that long waiting on you to arrive, we probably would’ve been well rationed right now.”
“Don’t try and pin this on me, you lot were waiting on Nuon. In fact, if I hadn’t shown up it looked like you guys would’ve opted to starve in that cabin.”
Silverstar glared at the witch, who also returned the intense stare. Except unlike Silver’s, Lusha’s glare actually held weight behind them.
Silverstar backed off. “Alright alright. We’ll go out and hunt some food. Just keep an eye out for Vein and the girl. Though it's nothing for someone of your level to worry about, this forests got goblins.”
She paused for a second. “Eh? I thought they were all ext-” She bit her tongue upon realizing the look of suspicion on everyone’s faces. A lot must have happened during the great goblin extermination of her era. To think they’d be back up alive. They always did have such high reproductivity.
“Alright. Well, we best get to it.” Giren said, sharpening his blade and taking some of Vein’s throwing daggers. “We’ll be back before you know it.”
With that, they departed. Lusha let out a sigh of relief, finally able to have some peace without their foul energies stinking up the place. She removed the firewood they had prepared from the back of the carriage and set it ablaze.
“So, Rinn. I have to ask you this alone since I feel the others are disingenuous… what is this healing ability of yours.”
She took a bite of what little rations were still pure as they set on some logs they had prepared out. The crackling of the flames and the smacking of her lips were all that could be heard for several seconds.
“Look kid. I don’t exactly know what's actually going on in this mission, but I hate to be played for as a fool. If anything bad is going on I’d like to know.
The girl remained silent and kept her gaze averted from the witch. Her hand had been holding onto her injured shoulder the whole trip. Despite the fact that it was only a bruise. Perhaps she hated her for causing that kind of damage. Who knows.
“Sigh… you know kid. You’re really pissing me off with your mopy attitude and tears. You lack respect. Between you and Vein there, I’m not certain who’ll turn out more brain dead.”
She heard some unusual rustling behind her and got up, turning around to see what it was. There it was again for a couple seconds before completely dying down. A small squirrel was carried out of the bush by an owl. For a second she had thought that it was a goblin.
She didn’t turn around. She was a little too surprised by what she thought she was hearing. Did this girl just retort by telling her to die, this was an amusing turn of events. She had almost burst into tears laughing.
“Why do you….”
“Want to die…?”
What… is this..?